Oncology (General Cancer)/Ca 72-4

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Question
What is the utility of ca 72-4? The pt is a 24 yof with no significant past medical hx other than gi complaints of intermittent pain. No scope has been done, treated with proton pump inhibitors. No wt loss, anema. Being seen by MD in e Europe. No family hx of ca or genetic gi disease. Thank you for insight

Answer
CA 72-4 is an antigen that is associated with gastric (stomach) cancer.  However, it is not useful in diagnosis, but rather, in evaluating the effects of therapy, or considering relapse.  Your patient sounds quite young to have gastric cancer.  I hope, however, that the patient has had an upper endoscopy.  There are some pre-cancerous conditions which might cause chronic upper gi complaints, like Barrett's esophagus, achlorhydria, or C. Difficiele infection.  Hope this helps.  

Oncology (General Cancer)

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Donald Higby, M.D.

Expertise

I can answer almost all questions related to the treatment and natural course of most kinds of cancer, especially cancers of prostate, colon, lung and breast.

Experience

I have been a practicing medical oncologist for 36 years, and have been chief of service at a major medical center for 25 years. I've also done research in cancer treatments.

Organizations
American Society of Clinical Oncology

Publications
New England Journal of Medicine American Journal of Medicine Journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology Hematology Transfusion Medicine

Education/Credentials
MD, Stanford University Internal Medicine residency, St. Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO Medical Oncology Fellowship, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY

Awards and Honors
America's Best Physicians, last 14 years

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